Robert Frie – Operations Manager

Robert Frie brings enormous amounts of process management and cheesemaking knowledge with him to Chalet Cheese. He has been working in the dairy industry in various capacities for over 26 years. Even at a young age, Rob was spending quality time with his dad hauling milk from dairy farms to local creameries. His experiences with the Marine Corps, then with various cheesemaking factories, has supplied him with the tools to help lead Chalet Cheese.

At Chalet Cheese, Rob sees the potential for growth and feels the excitement of working at a small, award-winning operation.
Respect, collaboration, and participation with employees is a cornerstone to his style of management. Educating employees and encouraging their involvement is key in the cheesemaking process.

Bob Bobak

Bob Bobak took a part time job in the cheese industry initially, to get inside during the cold winters in Wisconsin while working in construction.   That was almost 30 years ago.  Bob brings to the Chalet team, decades of seasonal knowledge and hands on experience in several different cheese types. Bob believes that over the years one of the most important lessons is to train and educate those on your team.  He’s held several positions from Cheesemaker, Production Manager and Plant Superintendent.  Favorite cheeses are hard style table cheese such as a Gruyere or an aged Gouda and he won’t shy away from a good mixed milk cheese with goat or sheep’s milk.  When he’s not on the cheese vats, Bob enjoys and values time with family and friends and anything outdoors.

Israel “Izzy” Gonzales

Israel “Izzy” Gonzales has been in the cheese industry for about15 years in various roles.  He’s worked as a cheesemaker’s apprentice, production lead, pasteurizer operator and department supervisor.  Each day, Izzy hones his craft on the vats in search of that perfect cheese.  When he’s not working on his cheesemaking, he’s honing his golf game.  An avid golfer, Izzy enjoys passing along his knowledge to his son on the course. He also enjoys hanging out with friends and hiking near by trails.  “The art of cheesemaking can be frustrating and rewarding all in the same day.  It’s what keeps it interesting” Izzy states.  

Michael Nelson

Michael Nelson looks at every day as a learning opportunity. Even though he has won numerous awards over the years, i.e. World, U.S. and State Championships, Mike feels that running the Chalet’s Deppeler plant gives him the most satisfaction. Mike attributes his father as the most influential person in his life. His Dad encouraging him to try his very best each day. No wonder the cheese Mike produces at the Deppeler Plant keeps getting better and better every day.

Rick Buss

Rick Buss must run on energizer batteries – he never stops! You can find him honing his craft in the make room or the cellar, learning what makes a factory tick and working with customers. His dedication to the industry is illustrated by his cheese sampling trier tattoo.

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